Thursday, October 25, 2007

In Search of Islamic Fascism

This week the right-wing is trying to promote "Islamic-Fascism Awareness Week" on college campuses and in the United States more generally.

But they're not doing a very good job. I first read about "Islamic-Fascism Awareness Week" on the left-wing blog Talking Points Memo. And it wasn't until today (Thursday) that I read about it in a conservative source--Ann Coulter's column.

But Coulter doesn't identify what she means by Islamo-Fascism because she's too eager to refer to liberals as fascists.

Evidently, the fingers she uses to type "traitor" were worn out and she had to switch to fascist to avoid "repetition" injuries like carpal tunnel.

But really, who are the Islamo-Fascists? And who are their main friends and allies? Of course, the Big Cheeses of Islamo-Fascism are Osama bin Laden and the Taliban leadership. And bin Laden and the Taliban have certain fascist qualities about them--their reliance on leadership charism as the focus of group loyalty, focus on Islamic purity, focus on the modern West as "the decadent "other," and expansionist aim of establishing a global caliphate.

But the purveyors of the "Islamo-Fascist" concept want to incorporate Iran, the Hezbollah movement in Lebanon, and the Hamas movement in the Palestinian territories as elements in a tidal wave of "Islamo-Fascism" that threatens to engulf the world, force us all to become Muslims, and drape "our women" in burkas.

In fact, the prime thrust of "Islamo-Fascist Awareness Week" is to convince people that American women are "that close" to adapting the burka as their primary fasion statement.

Let me count some of the ways in which this is nonsense.

It should be mentioned that neither the Iranians, Hezbollah, or Hamas are allied with bin Laden or likely to become involved with bin Laden in the future. Moreover, none of these parties either have global terrorist ambitions or have taken global terrorist initiatives. Finally, the Iranians, Hezbollah, and Hamas are all much more involved in democracy than our allies in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, or Jordan.

In other words, there is no Islamo-Fascist Movement outside al-Qaeda in Pakistan, al-Qaeda in Iraq, and the al-Qaeda cells operating in various countries. Likewise, al-Qaeda in Iraq and the various al-Qaeda cells in other countries owe at least 90% of their interest and success to the blundering stupidity of the Bush administration. Instead of bin Laden drawing them to al-Qaeda and global terrorism, the Bush administration pushes them in that direction. Bin Laden may be their role model, but President Bush is their best friend and most powerful source of recruitment.

What threat is posed by al-Qaeda and the various al-Qaeda cells?

Al-Qaeda outlets are capable of launching terrorist attacks, but they are real threats in only two places--Afghanistan and Pakistan. The situation is especially dangerous in Pakistan where people who are committed to global terrorism are spread throughout the Pakistani military and intelligence apparatus. If al-Qaeda succeeded in overthrowing the Pakistani government and establishing a Taliban regime in Pakistan, that would be a genuine threat.

Otherwise, al-Qaeda isn't much of a threat. It seems that all the organization around bin Laden is capable of is maintaining correspondence with Iraq and producing an occasional video.

Not exactly impressive.

And that's why my wife, daughters, woman colleagues, and female students aren't buying any burkas despite all the effort going into "Islamo-Fascist Awareness Week."

6 comments:

Todd Mayo said...

Pakistan is the least stable and those weapons could easily fall into the wrong hands if the situation continues to worsen.

Pakistan is thought to have some 30-50 nuclear weapons.(Lee Feinstein, James C. Clad, Lewis A. Dunn, and David Albright, A New Equation: U.S. Policy Toward India and Pakistan After September 11)

Pakistan is now also producing weapons plutonium, but the amount produced to date is believed to be small, only enough for a handful of additional nuclear weapons. (Washington, D.C.: Center for Defense Information) Still, every nuclear power had to begin at some point. In this respect, Pakistan and India for that matter are effectively engaged in the early stages of an "arms race." Further, matters are made worse when US leaders like Senator Barack Obama call for striking at Taliban targets inside Pakistan It seems to strengthen the hands of those elements in this country who seldom bother to look at Islamabad’s relations with Washington. The last thing we need is is telegraph the folks in Pakistan plans that threaten their sovereignty. has failed to accomplish its most important mission: defeating Al Qaeda and protecting the country from terrorism?? Al Qaeda!! Al-Quaeda is as srong as it ever was and determined to strike again yet the recommendations of the bipartisan 9/11 Commission continue to be ignored by the Bush White Houe.

It is true that both India and
Pakistan and in are spending sgnificant resources pursuit of Nuclear weapons but there is some cause for hope.

tim said...

Just a disgusting attempt by Horowitz, Coulter, et. al to sell books to geniuses like B Moe and JD. And, all these nice lefty kids are willing to boo them to help out? If I didn't know better, I'd think they were in on it too

Todd Mayo said...

Okay, that comment was made at 5:30 in the morning. It makes no sense in spots so lets try that again:(IF YOU'D DELETE THE FIRST ATTEMPT AND LEAVE THIS ONE, I'D APPRECIATE IT.)

Pakistan is the least stable of any nation that harbors Al Qaeda cells in large numbers. Therefore, it is easy to see why Pakistan could be considered the most dangerous nation at the moment. The nuclear weaponry possessed by the Pakistani government could easily fall into the wrong hands if the political situation continues to worsen.

Pakistan is thought to have some 30-50 nuclear weapons.(Lee Feinstein, James C. Clad, Lewis A. Dunn, and David Albright, A New Equation: U.S. Policy Toward India and Pakistan After September 11)

Pakistan is now also producing weapons plutonium, but the amount produced to date is believed to be small, only enough for a handful of additional nuclear weapons. (Washington, D.C.: Center for Defense Information) Still, every nuclear power had to begin at some point and one such weapon in the wrong hands is EXTREMELY dangerous.

For the past several years, Pakistan and India have been effectively engaged in a snall-scale "arms race."

Matters are made worse when US leaders like Senator Barack Obama call for striking at Taliban targets inside Pakistan. The last thing we need is to lead Pakistan to believe that we have plans to threaten their sovereignty.

Al-Quaeda is all over Pakistan, Afghanistan, and thanks to Mr. Bush's war, Iraq. They as srong as or stronger than they ever were and determined to strike again.

This makes me question why the recommendations of the bipartisan 9/11 Commission continue to be ignored by the Bush White Houe.

It is true that both India and
Pakistan are spending significant resources in pursuit of bigger and better nuclear weapons but there is some cause for hope.

It's called diplomacy. We talk. We don't allow Mussharef to be toppled as we did Saddam Hussein. Saddam was a horrible ruthless dictator, so is Musharef. But the one thing they both had in common and that we need now in Pakistan is the ability to maintain stability. We cannot find Al Qaeda cells if the Pakistani government won't let us look.

Ric Caric said...

The efforts to shout down conservatives are pretty ridiculous. If Coulter came to my campus, I'd escort her to her speech myself.

Todd Mayo said...

Nothing wrong with that Ric, but in the event that you ever have the opportunity to escort Ms Coulter to ANY event, you might want to schedule an appointment for rabies shots ahead of time. LOL (HAD TO!!)

I agree, it is pointless to shut down conservatives but it is tiresome that everytime someone makes good points, in my case, they tend to go with the plagarism charge in a pathetic attempt to shut me down.

I find it very vexing not to WANT them to shut up and go away. Referring to me as a Plagarist in particular is both insulting and stupid.

I think the most insulting part of that charge is how ignorant would I have to be to copy and paste the words of others in a public forum AND PUT MY OWN NAME ON IT?? No one is that stupid.

So it's a harsh and unnecessary insult both to my integrity and my intelligence.

I'd like to think that everyone here can abide by the honor system. Never levy Ad-Hominem attacks on the veracity of someone else's remarks even if you hate that person. A true debate does not include name calling and accusations of intellectual misconduct or lack of ability to form one's own ideas. The point of debate is to take on someone's IDEAS, not their personal attributes and not questioning the source of those ideas.

That evades the issues under discussion so I typically do not respond to the personal attacks but they surely do diminish the discourse here.

You once told me that they say much the same about you. I would assume this is an attempt to shut you down so I guess I am in good company.

But remember, contact with Ann Coulter= vaccinations. LOL. (She doesn't comment in this forum so I don't mind taking cheap shots at her. She'll never see it)...Perhaps Todd=hypocrite. Hope not.

Anonymous said...

"Just a disgusting attempt by Horowitz, Coulter, et. al to sell books to geniuses like B Moe..."

They failed then, I much prefer Dominic Crosnan, Bruton Mack and Karen Armstrong as religious authors.

B Moe